My little crafting world....

Hi all
I'm a complete craft addict, so much so that I have left the rat race for the inky race and now have a small business called Surrey Crafts teaching craft workshops in Surrey. If you'd like to find out more just leave a comment, or take a look at my Surrey.Crafts page on FB.
Crafty hugs & stuff

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Upcycled Artist's Stool and Brush box

Hi all

I felt it was time to have a go at using the DecoArt Chalky Finish paints. I was slightly nervous about it so I went onto a local social media site and looked for itemes that were free.  I found a couple of bits someone was going to throw away if not collected, and that's where the fun started. This pic shows two of the finished items.  Easy tutorial below with a picture of the products used. Go on, give it a try!

This stool as you can see was looking a bit 'well loved' so that was a 'no risk' start to playing. I gave it a good clean then sanded down the seat as it had lots of bumpy paint splatters and the edges were splintering then cleaned it again to get the dust off.

I turned the stool upside down and painted the legs and underneath of the stool and all sides/ bottom of the box with a coat of DecoArt Americana Chalky Finish Paint in a minty green ('Refreshing') and it's quite a bright colour so I mixed in a little white ('everlasting'). The white paint was a little thicker so I added just a few drops of water to get a buttery consistency that glided on beautifully and the flat 2inch brush was brill for getting into the nooks and crannies!
Once this was dry and I'd got a feel for the paint I painted the seat itself and the reverse of the sliding box lid as it was flat and I didn't want the brand name showing. I wanted to jazz it up a little AND to try out all the colours I had in the laziest way possible! And as most of the artists I know are a bit dotty that was the answer.

 The polka dots were added with 3 foam stencil brushes (which come in packs of 12 and in 4 sizes).

Finally, once all the paint was dry I coated with the cream finishing wax and tadaaaa!
Love how cheerful these bits now look!
Happy upcycling.

Friday, 19 June 2015

From Stars to Angels

This was one of those projects that began as a scrap of card that I couldn't throw away and started to play with - don'tcha just love art!!

So above here is the finished article and below shows the original scrap and tells how it grew from the start.....lots of pics as I was trying to catch the best light to show the amazing colours of the DecoArt Interference paints on the hearts as they change colour!!!
So in the beginning there was this scrap of card with some shapes die cut out of it (used to make a 75th Birthday card for my Dad a couple of weeks ago - pic of finished card at the end of the post).

 I painted it with three colours of Media Fluid Acrylics
 Then I added a layer of crackle paint - in varying thickness to alter the cracks - but put it on a little too thinly in places so the colour underneath didn't show through as I'd wanted! I used Patina Green antiquing cream all over, left for an hour then wiped some off with a baby wipe. Loved it!!!

I also embossed and painted some die cut and punched shapes to use in those spaces..

Painted the star with transparent red iron oxide and primary yellow. Then added gold and silver dry brushing to highlight the embossing. That was fine until I heard some really sad news from my friend which changed how I was feeling and consequently the direction of the project.

I painted over with pink (a mixture of titanium white and red). I then used white antiquing cream. As the paper was very porous I was able to wipe some off straight after applying and still leave enough behind.


To decorate the hearts I adapted an idea from one of Andy Skinners YouTube tutorials on using Interference Paints (to see it click here) but instead of firstly diluting the paint then adding to the DG3 Art Gel, I used a layer of the DecoArt clear liquid glass and then dropped various neat interference paints into the wet liquid. On some I also took a pokey tool and swirled the paints to give a variety of looks. I left these to dry overnight. The interference colours look very different depending on the colour that was underneath them. With silver underneath they look like Mother of Pearl; on top of bright red they each pop - love em!

I took a piece of A4 blue card and journaled my thoughts over it in white pen. Doing this always helps me clear my head.  Then I spritzed it with a little bit of blue (primary cyan) and then white DecoArt Misters to hide the words I'd written, thought I didn't do it that well so have not included the close up of the background.

It needed 'something more' so I used the Andy Skinner snake skin (Shedded) stencil with my original blue paints and also an Americana Pixelated stencil with titanium white fluid acrylics. I also used some of the left over blue paint to go around each of the apertures to add depth to the cut out shapes.  Next step was to layer up the die cut card onto the journaled background with some 3D foam tape to leave a nice gap underneath. 

At that point I could have left it but ended up drawing around the apertures with a white paint marker....not sure if I prefer it before or after so guess it doesn't matter!
 The following morning I added in the stars hearts and wings. Then I typed up a few words, inked around them and added them too.
Here are more pics of the interference paints....I'll be using this technique to make some jewellery I!

Hope you like my project and decide to have a go with some of those amazing media products! 
All the Best Suz xx

Oh and here is a pic of my Dad's card, the one that started this all off!

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Oak House Studio One Stamp

Hi all

It was One Stamp weekend over at Oak House Studio and we were using the beautiful Sunflower Stamp.  Here is my quick make: a glitzy tag. Hope you like it!
I used a tag to mop up some DecoArt Americana paints in Turquoise and Teal Green (as you do) which I'd been using for a canvas project that I'll post a blog about later. There wasn't quite enough left to cover the tag so I added some beautiful spray inks also from OHS in French Mint, Blue Jeans and Pearly Silver (which gives a shimmer that I didn't pick up in the photo), then a little treasure gold around the edges to add a touch of drama (always need a little drama in your life!).

I stamped the sunflower and also the English Garden Words and in the middle of the tag the Iron Border stamp (which is one of my most used and ridiculously cheap)! I stamped the sunflower separately and coloured with water colour crayons before cutting it out and layering it on with some dimensional glue. I added a metal jewellery ring to the sunflower and a paperclip to the tag. Black beads to the middle of all the sunflowers and a good dose of platinum glass glitter around the edges which is a Finnabair Art Ingredient. To finish I just added a little red glaze sakura pen to the middle of the iron stamp. Love how it turned out.I've entered it into the Craft Stamper June challenge which is Texture (beads and glass glitter).
All the best

Friday, 24 April 2015

Wall Art using Indigo Blue Stamps

Hi all

I was feeling a bit disappointed that I couldn't got to Ally Pally earlier this month when I saw a post showing that Indigo Blue wouldn't be there either and were offering a discount online instead.
So to console myself I ordered a few new stamps. When I got them I had to put them away for a couple of days (torture).....but then I finally found a bit of time to get messy so I made some art to go in an Ikea Frame that was sitting in the hallway ready to go back as I didn't need it (!).

I started by using spray inks by Oak House Studio in yellow, pink, blue and purple. Then I added some Dusky Concorde ink around the edge and a little black. Then I used the edge of my new eye stamp and some older stamps from the Butterfly Collector set, stamped them with Versamark and embossed with some white embossing powder.
On another piece of sprayed card I stamped the whole Dramatic Eye image with black Archival. Once dry I added some white Signo Uniball pen to make the eye come alive. I wrote some words with a black calligraphy pen on spare card then layered all onto a light cream then black card.

I played about with them and added them all onto the background layer, then added this to a 12 x 12 piece of purple card.

I popped the whole thing into the Ikea frame (only £9) and here it is....a gentle reminder when things get a bit tricky!

Hope you like it. Suz x

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Journal 52, week 22 - cards

This was a tricky prompt to start with. So I just took out a box of children's foam playing cards that I bought for 75p in a sale somewhere (one of those 'oh they'll come in useful' purchases, lol). I initially looked at using the Queen of Hearts but the picture was a bit naff. I then looked at the Ace of hearts. I decided the heart in the middle could be a mouth - and I built up the rest of the page from there, trying not too think about it too much!.

I painted over the foam card with white Gesso. Once dry I used a Micron pen to form a mouth around the central heart. Then I drew in the rest of the face, coloured the eyes with a Sharpie marker and used a white Sakura pen to add highlights to the eyes and mouth.Beside it is a pic of another Ace so you get an idea of how they were before the painting.

 I drew in the neckline and highlighted the other hearts and the upside down A.
Once I was happy with the face I added it to a spare card made me think the face looked framed with hair. I added 'earrings' and some writing. 

 I roughly placed the card onto a journal page and worked out where I wanted to paint some fowers so they were beneath the card. Took off the card, completed the background and then added it back in in as the focal point. Before taking the final pic at the top I cleaned up the A and heart a little and extended the shoulder line to fully meet up with the card. I really liked the way it turned out. And I was very pleased to finally find a use for one of the foam cards.....only another 53 to go!
Suz xxx

Saturday, 11 April 2015

April workshop - parchment embossing and aperture making

Hi all

Been a bit busy lately so this is a quick post to show you how we made today's workshop card.
I wanted to do a different shape this time and have an aperture that would focus on the technique of this month which was embossing velum. I knew of several ways to make aperture cards, but then I came across a wonderful simple step by step tutorial through good old Pinterest:

This quick and simple method made it possible to combine both the shaped card making and the parchment embossing in a 2 hour class - so big thanks to Norma for sharing.
First thing we did was to have a practice of embossing parchment on some scraps to get a feel for the pressure needed to get the best results. Then the girls chose a 'sticky stencil' to work with and embossed onto a circle of parchment. You could just as easily trace and transfer a design but this was a fab quick method for the class. They we added a tiny about of Cosmic Shimmer around the entire edge of the circle and added the white scalloped frame which would hide the glue. Then these were glued onto a large circled of teal paper from Papermill Direct , I bought a batch of card from these guys recently and the colours are beautiful, price very good and it scores wonderfull with no cracks. This matches the card base which is A4 gatefold scored with the aperture cut as per the link above
 I then showed them the method Norma had used for creating the aperture but I did these while they carried on working on the rest of the project steps 

 Then we added some patterned cardstock to the inside of the card from Docrafts Papermania Capsule collection (EAu deNil). We decorated the edges of the card using a white Signo pen to frame and contrast and added punched flowers, gems and pearls to decorate. A sentiment to finish off and there you have it. Suz xxx

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Don't trim cards while you are talking on the phone!

Here is a 50th birthday card for another lovely lady. 

Across the background I used a wash of watercolours. I drew a Roman style column and then used the 'Folk It' techniques to paint the flowers cascading down. I doodled a large letter L (Roman numeral for the number 50) added some white Signo Uni-Ball pen, some gems and that was it really. 

The only slight problem being that while I was cutting the card down to fit the 8x8 card blank my Mum called. Instead of waiting until I was off the phone to trim down the card I carried on and made a real 'pigs ear' of it, taking too much off the top and side. 

Such is life, bet you've all done it at some point - or should I say "Et tu, Brute?". Hahaaa. Suz xxx

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

New Home card

This quick card for my cousin's daughter who's just bought her first home with her fiance, was made using a set of stamps from The Artistic Stamper called "Our House", designed by Kathleen Fullman. 

I love this set as it is so easy to use for 'paper piecing'. 
Stamping onto various patterned and coloured backgrounds, cutting them out and mixing and matching the roofs and buildings can give you enough houses for several cards in one go.

Before I stuck down the houses I tore some inked green card and glued that on leaving the tops open so I could slide some of the houses behind. The front house I lifted off the page using foam tape.

I stamped the words onto white card and cut them in the shape of clouds and I doodled squiggles around the card to frame it and coloured in the diddy circles with a white Signo Uni-Ball pen. I also cut the doors open on a couple of the houses and wrote little messages inside. 

Good quick fun. Suz xxx

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Quick card using PaperArtsy stamps on a geli print background and a Dylusions Stencil

Hi all
Not had much chance to blog recently....stuff happens. But having had stuch a fab time at the Hobby Craft and Stitches day at the NEC Birmingham on Tuesday, I thought I should get back into the groove! And while I'm at it I'll enter it into the Craft Stamper challenge which for this month is Stencilling. Love this months issue.

I recently found out a neighbour has been diagnosed with breast cancer and wanted to make her a bright pretty card. Having got my hands on one of the soon to be released stamp sets ESN14 by Sara Naumann from PaperArtsy I knew exactly what to use. I'm also planning my next workshop which will be based around using stencils so those two things together helped me come up with a quick and simple plan using dye based inks.

I stamped the images onto a gelatin plate print (made just by brayering DecoArt Quin Voilet and Titanium white onto copy paper). Cut these out (while waiting for the kettle to boil - always multi tasking!!!).
On a piece of white card I stencilled through the Dylusions Luscious Leaves stencil usint Spun Sugar then Pickled Raspberry distress inks in alternate directions.
I then added a strip of ribbon, adhered the flowers, added glass beads to the middle, some pink gems to and a stamped sentiment. I used a white acrylic paint pen to the base kraft card to make dots and a Signo Uniball pen for the wiggly lines. Finally adding the decorated white card to the base card.  I should have taken more time to ensure the sentiment looked straighter, but then it is a handmade card and I know my friend will appreciate it just the same!

Have fun all.